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Harissa Mediterranean Cuisine takes its name from a mountainside village in Lebanon that attracts visitors every year with a 15-ton bronze statue of Our Lady of Lebanon. Chef Walid Alabtan seeks to make his restaurant a destination as well, attracting diners with a hearty spread of Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cuisine and steadily gaining their loyalty. In her 2010 feature of the restaurant in the Seattle Times, Nancy Leson claimed, "If I lived in Ravenna, I'd add Harissa … to my list of neighborhood go-to joints."
The chefs grill skewers of lamb, chicken, and salmon over open flames, and they ladle helpings of seasonal vegetables and seafood into the kitchen's percolating stew pots. To counteract the menu's overwhelmingly hearty and savory cuisine, they also make baklava by hand and whisk herbs into yogurt and housemade cream cheese to serve them as refreshing appetizers. The dining room creates a slightly refined ambiance with crisp white tablecloths, gentle track lighting, and framed artwork along the soft-yellow and orange walls. Live belly dancing and jazz bands perform on select nights, entertaining diners even more than a jigsaw puzzle that reveals their inheritance.
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